About the Agricultural Learning Center
The Learning Center provides class trip destinations, in class programming, professional development workshops, and a variety of resources for elementary grade teachers looking to integrate agriculture into their curriculum. Resources are also available for parents and teachers. The staff of the Learning Center welcomes your feedback and is ready to respond to your needs.
The Agricultural Learning Center at the Fairgrounds was established in 2010 to provide students and educators with entertaining and informative experiences relating to agriculture. A committee of individuals with backgrounds in education and experience working with The New Jersey State Fair®/Sussex County Farm & Horse Show, the largest agricultural fair in the state, develops and implements the programs of the Center. These programs have reached over 13,000 children, plus teachers and parents in Sussex County as of June 2022.
The Learning Center supports the Sussex County Farm & Horse Show Association's mission statement: "to showcase New Jersey's agriculture; provide safe, family-friendly entertainment and engaging educational activities; and promote youth development." The county's agricultural community has been very supportive. Individuals have assisted at class trip visits and donated pumpkins, corn, hay, straw, and sunflowers for the students to use.
To educate children and adults about agriculture in general, and in New Jersey and Sussex County specifically, by providing educational and entertaining programming and materials to students, parents and school districts. To respond to the specific needs of school districts and parents by developing agricultural programming and materials to meet these needs.
Comments from local schools
“It’s truly a teacher and student favorite. Thanks!…” — Franklin School
“This is a wonderful trip for kindergarten! It is age and developmentally appropriate for this age child…” —Montague School
“Thank you for all of your hard work planning and putting this program together. It really was a wonderful day for the children and a great learning experience…” — Green Hills School
“Interesting and worthwhile information that directly related to the study of NJ Agriculture was provided during interactive presentations. Students were actively engaged during each station’s activities…” — Sandyston Walpack School
“The different activities your facilitators designed appropriately fit into our New Jersey Social Studies curriculum by expanding students’ knowledge of local history of Sussex County…” — Frankford School
“Several students wrote that it was their favorite field trip so far! One said it was so much fun because ‘we got to do things…Not just sit and listen…'”— Wantage School
“Perfect amount of time” “The activities were especially engaging.” "Very appropriate presentation for third grade.” — Frankford Township third grade teachers
“The children were occupied at all times and were interested in the concepts being presented. Each station was unique and interesting. I could tell my class was learning and having fun…” — Clifton E. Lawrence School
Feedback from a visiting student
“Your presentation was great. My favorite part was about the mules. I love animals. I also loved learning about the different things about George Washington. The only thing I knew about George Washington was he was the first president. It had so much information. The fact I learned was that he was a farmer I was pretty surprised, because you’d think his favorite job was being president. You know because you get this huge house to you and the people you live with, and you all don’t have to use the same bathroom. Thank you so much for teaching everybody about George Washington…” — fourth grade student, Frankford School
Endorsements from county & state officials
“Your program appears to be well-planned and structured for age appropriate activities…” — Mary Jane Tanner, Sussex County Office of Education
“There are a number of activities that children are going to be learning and at the same time having fun. So when you put those two things together it is great fun for kids…At the very earliest level of education this is a great program and I hope it replicates itself across all areas of the state…” — Douglas Fisher, New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture